- J.K. Rowling is suing her former assistant and accusing her of stealing more than $US30,000 to pay for shopping sprees and gifts.
- According to the lawsuit, the unauthorised payments include $US4,500 for cosmetics, $US2,000 for candles, and $US1,600 for cats.
- The “Fantastic Beasts” creator is also accusing her former assistant of taking valuable “Harry Potter” memorabilia.
- Amanda Donaldson, the former assistant, has denied the claims.
“Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling is suing her former assistant, Amanda Donaldson, and accusing her of swindling away more than $US30,000 for personal shopping sprees.
Donaldson worked for Rowling as an assistant between 2014 and 2017. During that time, she had access to a credit card that was supposed to be used for Rowling’s business and personal expenses.
But, between personal spending on the business card and stolen “Harry Potter” merchandise, Rowling is accusing Donaldson of taking £23,696, or $US31,134, according to a copy of the lawsuit viewed by the BBC.
According to the lawsuit, Donaldson spent $US2,000 at coffee shops, $US4,500 at the cosmetics store Molton Brown, $US2,800 at the paper shop Paper Tiger, and $US2,000 at the luxury candle chain Jo Malone. (Rowling herself is a fan of the candle brand.)
Rowling also says in the lawsuit that Donaldson stole nearly $US1,600 to pay for two cats.
The lawsuit accuses Donaldson of pilfering “Harry Potter” memorabilia as well, saying she stole a motorised Hogwarts Express train and a wand collection worth $US3,000, as well as a rare “Tales of Beedle the Bard” set.
Rowling fired Donaldson in 2017 after her husband, Neil Murray, discovered discrepancies in her monthly spending statements. But it wasn’t until now that she initiated a lawsuit.
“I can confirm J.K. Rowling has taken legal action against her former personal assistant, Amanda Donaldson, following her dismissal for gross misconduct involving a substantial breach of trust,” a Rowling spokesperson told the BBC. “As the case is not yet concluded, we are not able to comment further, and there won’t be any comment from J.K. Rowling.”
Donaldson denied the accusations, according to the BBC, saying Rowling has “not suffered any loss and is not entitled to damages.”